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BT testing microwave broadband



BT is testing a new form of broadband technology that transmits data over microwaves rather than fixed lines.

The British telecoms giant is carrying out further tests of the technology in the Yorkshire village of Westow, following similar trials on the island of Rathlin and the Devon village of Northlew.

This so-called Wireless-to-the-Cabinet (WTTC) approach connects telephone exchanges to local street cabinets using a line-of-sight wireless microwave link rather than the current fibre optic cable solution (or FTTC).

Those local cabinets then connect to homes using good old fashioned copper cable, as is the case in current superfast broadband services.

These tests are seen as a way for BT to reach the final 5 percent of the UK that is still unable to access superfast broadband. The logistics of laying down fibre optic cable in small, remote population centres like Westow are simply not viable.

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ISPReview points out that this latest test from BT could be an attempt to secure government funding for reaching this remaining 5 percent. To date, the only funding the UK government has supplied in relation to this cause has been for eight non-BT pilot projects.

Evidently, BT isn't remaining idle in its efforts to reach that final 5 percent, as well as to boost speeds for the lucky 95 percent.


February 10, 2015, 1:02 pm

Roasted sparrow anyone? :)

LGW Bailey

February 10, 2015, 2:02 pm

I used to have micorwave broadband in London in the early-mid 2000s - part of an NTL trial that lasted a few years - all you needed then was a line-of-sight btewwen the transmitter and a receiver dish. It worked very well - wasn't all that fast but was reliable.


February 10, 2015, 2:44 pm

now the microwaves of jap'andjob can cook my carrot ! ('v')

Peter Dadster Adley

April 13, 2016, 11:59 am

The good old fashion copper cables is the main problem in rural areas. BT simply won't invest in replacing the many miles of failed cabling to our properties. This is our main problem in rural areas of Gillingham in Kent. we could probably get a respectable speed (currently below 7mbps) if only they would replace the copper cables. The network is getting knackered and we are paying a fiery rate price for a really second or third rate service.

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